microwave oven

an electrically operated oven using high-frequency electromagnetic waves that penetrate food, causing its molecules to vibrate and generating heat within the food to cook it in a very short time.
[1960-65]

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Appliance that cooks food by means of high-frequency electromagnetic radiation.

A microwave oven is a relatively small, boxlike oven that raises the temperature of food by subjecting it to a high-frequency electromagnetic field. The microwaves are absorbed by water, fats, sugars, and certain other molecules, whose resulting vibrations produce heat. The heating thus occurs inside the food, without warming the surrounding air. This process greatly reduces cooking time; baking and other tasks that may require an hour or more in a conventional oven can be completed in minutes in a microwave oven.

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also called  electronic oven 

      appliance that cooks food by means of high-frequency electromagnetic waves called microwaves. A microwave oven is a relatively small, boxlike oven that raises the temperature of food by subjecting it to a high-frequency electromagnetic field. The microwaves are absorbed by water, fats, sugars, and certain other molecules, whose consequent vibrations produce heat. The heating thus occurs inside the food, without warming the surrounding air; this greatly reduces cooking time, and baking and other cooking tasks that require hours in a conventional oven can be completed in minutes in a microwave oven. Microwave ovens generate radiation at a frequency of about 2,450 megahertz by means of a magnetron, which is a kind of electron tube.

      Since the heating occurs by an absorption process, microwave ovens tend to cook certain foods unevenly or at different rates. For example, moist foods cook faster than less moist ones, and moist outer layers tend to absorb most of the radiation before it can reach inner sections, which remain uncooked. Microwave ovens also cannot brown or crisp foods on the outside. Most types of glass, Styrofoam (trademark), polyethylene, paper, and similar materials do not absorb the microwaves and hence do not heat up. Foods cannot be cooked in metal vessels in a microwave oven, however, because the metal blocks out the microwaves. Microwave ovens are subject to safety standards that ensure minimal levels of radiation leakage from them, and no significant health hazards are associated with such leakages.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Microwave oven — A modern microwave oven …   Wikipedia

  • microwave oven — Appliance Ap*pli ance, n. 1. The act of applying; application. [1913 Webster] 2. subservience; compliance. [Obs.] Shak. [1913 Webster] 3. A thing applied or used as a means to an end; an apparatus or device; as, to use various appliances; a… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • microwave oven — oven that uses microwaves to penetrate food and cook it fast …   English contemporary dictionary

  • microwave oven — noun Date: 1955 an oven in which food is cooked by the heat produced by the absorption of microwave energy by water molecules in the food …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • microwave oven — /ˌmaɪkrəweɪv ˈʌvən/ (say .muykruhwayv uvuhn) noun an oven which cooks with unusual rapidity, by passing microwaves through food and generating heat inside it. Also, microwave …   Australian English dictionary

  • microwave oven — noun kitchen appliance that cooks food by passing an electromagnetic wave through it; heat results from the absorption of energy by the water molecules in the food • Syn: ↑microwave • Derivationally related forms: ↑microwave (for: ↑microwave) •… …   Useful english dictionary

  • microwave oven — noun An appliance for cooking food using microwave energy. Syn: microwave …   Wiktionary

  • microwave oven — mi′crowave ov en n. cvb coo an electrically operated oven that uses microwaves to generate heat within the food • Etymology: 1960–65 …   From formal English to slang

  • Microwave oven —   A household cooking appliance consisting of a compartment designed to cook or heat food by means of microwave energy. It may also have a browning coil and convection heating as additional features.   U.S. Dept. of Energy, Energy Information… …   Energy terms

  • Microwave oven — …   Википедия

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